Dr Lewis Smith

Visiting Fellow
Essex Business School
Dr Lewis Smith



I’m originally from Ipswich, Suffolk, where I went to Copleston High School for my GCSE's and A-Levels. I have been at Essex since 2013, where I joined as an undergraduate and studied Modern History and Politics. It was only upon writing my undergraduate dissertation that I realised that I wanted to stay in research. In 2015 I undertook a Masters in History, and in 2016 began a Consortium of Humanities and Arts in the South East of England funded PhD with the Department of History, in which I wrote my thesis ‘Midwife at Britain’s Rebirth: The British Overseas Airways Corporation and the Projection of British Power’. This thesis examined Britain’s nationalised airline, BOAC, and how its internal and external communications helped to construct itself as the ‘guardian of Britishness’ against the dislocations of the post-war world. Since 2018, I have taught a variety of different modules, including Making of the Modern World, Becoming a Historian, Approaches to History, and Teaching History in Schools, where I became a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy in 2020. In 2022, I briefly joined the Centre for Lifelong Learning at the University of York teaching on the MA in Railway Studies course. In late 2022, I joined the Essex Business School as a Senior Research Officer (post-Doc) on Rebecca Warren’s project evaluating the effectiveness of the All-in programme for Eastlight Community Homes. I am also a convenor of the Institute of Historical Research on the Transport and Mobility History Seminar. I am broadly interested in industry and society in the post-war period (post-1945), and in particular, nationalised industry and their uses of communications (including Marketing and PR). This also includes research on the impact of Charities and the Third Sector in modern Britain. I am fascinated by the social and cultural implications of industry communications, particularly in the public sector, marking changes in their transition from formation under the welfare state and their responses to ‘decline’ in the context of neoliberalism into the twenty-first century.


  • PhD University of Essex, (2022)


Journal articles (5)

Smith, LC., ‘Like aid given by a mother to her young’: The British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC) and the marketing of economic development 1948–1965. Business History, 1-26

Smith, LC., (2023). Christian Wolmar. British Rail: A New History. London: Penguin Michael Joseph, 2022. 416 pp. ISBN 978-0-24145-620-0 $34.00 (cloth).. Enterprise & Society. 24 (1), 317-318

Smith, L., (2021). Using Advertisements for Historical Research

Smith, LC., (2021). Air Travel Fiction and Film: Cloud People by Erica Durante. The Journal of Transport History. 42 (3), 471-473

Smith, LC., (2019). Marketing modernity: Business and family in British Rail’s “Age of the Train” campaign, 1979–84. The Journal of Transport History. 40 (3), 363-394

Book chapters (1)

Smith, LC., (2020). Simulation and Preserved Mobility Spaces. In: Handbook on Research Methods and Applications for Mobilities. Edward Elgar Publishing. 325- 334. 1788115457. 9781788115452



Colchester Campus

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